by David Cohen
Colors, adventure and energy… these are some of the qualities one encounters when visiting South Africa. From incredible wildlife and astounding scenery to thriving cities, South Africa has it all. South Africa’s complexity emerged from Dutch and British colonial history, internal warfare, and decades of struggle to become a modern democracy. In 1652, Jan Riebeeck arrived in the Cape to establish a station for the powerful Dutch East India Company, importers of slaves from all parts of Africa.
Years later riots and violence against the colonial rule caused the weakening of the Dutch power and finally, the British seized the Cape in 1795. In 1994 after decades of apartheid rule, Nelson Mandela become the first president of a fully democratic South Africa. Eight journalists left New York City on a direct flight to Johannesburg on South Africa Airlines, and although we were excited about the trip, the airline’s economy class is intolerable for a 15-hour flight. Our first stop was Sun City, two-and-a-half hours outside Johannesburg. This over-the-top resort, with its Las Vegas-style entertainment and man-made beach, is the entertainment capital of the Northwest province.
At Sun City we stayed at the Palace, a luxurious 5 star hotel with overly lavish accommodations–we would have preferred something a bit more subtle.The Pilanesberg Game Reserve, adjacent to Sun City, lies in an extinct volcanic mountain and is the largest game reserve in South Africa and the best place to witness the most spectacular wildlife in the region. Wild animals seen frolicking here include white and black rhinos, giraffes, zebras, cheetahs, elephants, lions, water buffaloes, hippopotamuses, and many bird species. But the day’s highlight was only ten minutes away from the hotel at the Sundown Ranch, where we held a lion cub–one of the trip’s most unforgettable moments.
The safari continued with a visit to Makweti & Metsi lodges in the Welgevonden area (both Welgevonden and Pilanesberg are malaria-free). Only three hours away from Sun City, these lodges are elegant and beautifully designed and maintained. Our friendly and knowledgeable ranger, Wayne, made our stay memorable. In his open Land Rover we drove up and down rocky hills and over creeks, experiencing the flora and fauna of mother Africa. Here we searched for lions and enjoyed a night safari. To add to the ambience of the evening, the crew surprised us with a picnic in the wilderness, where we witnessed a colorful sunset. Sipping champagne and eating hors d’oeuvres in the wild was an unforgettable treat–and hearing the sounds of animals nearby made the experience even more exhilarating.
From Makweti & Metsi Lodges the tour continued northeast toward the famous Kruger National Park, where heat and humidity are as common as the blue sky. At this prime attraction you can sit and watch the wildlife from the privacy of your own room. Imagine watching the first unsteady steps of a lion cub or listening to the joyful calls of birds seeking mates or watching monkeys fighting among themselves– all from the luxury of your personal lodge. Here you’ll be pampered with every comfort imaginable and have the finest cuisine delivered to your doorstep or prepared and served for you in the wild.
At Mala Mala and Singita Game Reserves located inside the Sabi Sand Reserve near Kruger National Park, miracles really do came true. These resorts are first-class and offer luxury accommodations with a distinctly African style. One night at Mala Mala we tracked a family of leopards that seemed unconcerned by our proximity.
After a week on safari we flew to Cape Town, the gay mecca of South Africa. This hot destination is one of the most visited spots in South Africa, even when the sun isn’t shining. Cradled between the mountains and the sea, Cape Town attractions include beautiful sandy beaches, wine country, botanical gardens, museums, shopping, and more. A cable ride to the top of Table Mountain is a must. Named for its flat top, this mountain dominates the city’s skyline. From the top you can witness some of the best views of Cape Town and the peninsula. Visiting wine country is also required.
Over the past 10 years South Africa’s wine industry has experienced a renaissance, and their wines are among the most popular in the New World. A full day trip to wine country is recommended.Other places to visit are Cape Point, a cruise to Seal Island (a seal preserve), a trip to Robben Island, where Nelson Mandela was incarcerated for over 25 years, and the Castle of Good Hope.
We stayed at the Table Bay Hotel, a 5-star hotel on the stunning waterfront that is only minutes away from the gay village, Cape Town’s Boystown. The De Waterkant Village apartments–a complex of 60 beautiful restored historic cottages in the heart of the gay village–is another place where you can enjoy the privacy of home. Within walking distance to clubs, bars, bathhouses, restaurants, and shops, this village is the place where people meet to play day and night.Planning to explore the nightlife? We recommend some of the following spots. If dancing is what you want, then 55 is the stop for you–this club opens late and has a friendly crowd. Bronx is the most popular bar in the village, and is mixed, crowded and interesting. If a sophisticated atmosphere is important then Manhattan Café and Bar is the place to go. For steamy action go to the Hothouse or Steamers. Both bathhouses are open 24 hours on the weekends. Another spot to check out, especially on Sundays, is Clifton 3rd–the gay beach where you can mingle with locals.
DavidTours arranged dinner at Rozenhof restaurant where we dined with many of David Rubin’s (the owner of DavidTours) friends. We also were invited to a Sunday afternoon cocktail party at his friends’ mountaintop home, where the view of the peninsula was spectacular. Due to Cape Town’s high crime rate, caution is highly recommended here, and taking a taxi from one spot to another is a way of life. Make sure to call a taxi from inside an establishment, and never pick up a cab at the street corner.
From Cape Town we flew to Zambia to visit Victoria Falls–one of the world’s largest and most beautiful waterfalls. Nearby, at the Royal Livingston Hotel we treated ourselves to massages and were able to enjoy some rest and relaxation. At night we cruised the Zambezi River aboard the African Queen, where we witnessed a remarkable sunset with colors that reminded me of a Gaugin painting. The river was crowded with hippopotamuses and crocodiles. The following day we took a helicopter ride to see breathtaking Victoria Falls from above–Incredible! Unfortunately, three years of drought made the walking tour of the falls a bit disappointing.
From Zambia the tour traveled to Johannesburg. At night we dined with Rubin’s friends again. After dinner we visited the Heartland, a complex of gay bars which lacked the energy of metropolitan clubs and discos in the United States and Europe. After spending the final night of the tour at the Grace Hotel in Rosebank, an affluent suburb, we spent our last day bargain hunting at the Mall at Rosebank–the Mall’s African craft market has all your gift and souvenir needs.
South Africa’s diverse population, wonderful wildlife, and rich culture offer the traveler an unforgettable experience. Many thanks to DavidTours the organizer, and to our tour guide Christian who made our trip memorable.To learn more about Africa call DavidTours at (888) 723-0699 or visit their website at www.DavidTours.com.
ents from the top bar.
Sunday, May 22nd, 2011More than 35,000 LGBT customers have signed letter asking them to stop advertising on Fox News; thousands are flocking to Orbitz’s Facebook wall vowing to boycott the online travel agency.
Orbitz may end up losing thousands of customers and revenue because they refuse to stop advertising on Fox News, progressive grassroots organization Courage Campaign
said today.In less than four days, more than 35,000 individuals have signed a letter to Orbitz CEO Barney Harford
asking him to stop placing travel ads on the anti-gay television network. As of this press release, 1,352 customers have also taken to Orbitz’s Facebook wall to inform them that they will not be using Orbitz to book their travel until they stop.The Courage Campaign, along with Media Matters for America, GLAAD and Equality Matters, launched the campaign on Monday. Orbitz’s travel site, which previously was a strong supporter of and marketer to the LGBT community, has generated strong business growth for Orbitz. “It’s hypocritical to cater to our community, take our money and then turn around and give it to Fox so the network can broadcast lies about LGBT people and our issues,” said Adam Bink
of Online Programs
for the Courage Campaign
. “If Orbitz wants to maintain a gay-friendly image and keep their loyal customers, they should reconsider where they are buying ads because as you can see by some of these Facebook posts, folks are very angry that their money is being used to promote hate. “If you have a ‘strict policy of tolerance and non-discrimination’ then why advertise on a network that blatantly and regularly attacks the gay community?” Rick Jacobs
, founder and chair
of the Courage Campaign
, asked of Orbitz.
An average of 52 messages per hour are being posted on Orbitz’s Facebook page. Adiva Wayne
, a national and international traveler who’s been a longtime Orbitz customer, posted on Facebook: “I will no longer be using Orbitz for bookings. If Orbitz wishes to choose Fox “News” hatred over previously loyal customers (while portraying itself as an LGTB-friendly company, considering other adverts), it can stand to lose the millions of dollars in business. ”David B. Karpf
, another former loyal customer in Maryland, said: “I will not use Orbitz in the future as long as they advertise on the Fox News Network, and their advertising dollars support the bigoted, racist, homophobic views and outright lies and pandering espoused by most of the Fox commentators.”The Courage Campaign is taking these actions because we are frankly tired of this station’s history of destructive anti-gay language and actions, including:
1. Giving Mike Huckabee
his own show despite Huckabee’s history of comparing homosexuality to drug abuse, incest, pedophilia, and necrophilia. Huckabee has repeatedly used his Fox platform to campaign against gay marriage, and he has suggested that marriage equality poses a threat to stable society.
2. Bill O’ Reilly
repeatedly using his popular prime time show to warn against
the “dangers” of allowing gay people
near children, to assert that same-sex marriage
could lead to polygamy, nuptials with turtles, ducks or dolphins, and to claim that implementing a hate crimes bill could protect pedophiles.
3. Perpetuating the claim that repealing “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” would impact troop readiness and morale, despite multiple reports — including the Pentagon’s — to the contrary.It’s time Orbitz paid attention to what they are hurting.
Source: http://www.couragecampaign. org/testimony
‘Like Us' on Facebook – 'Follow Us' on Twitter
for a chance to win a trip for two to Toronto Canada.* by David Cohen Every year during Fourth of July Weekend, Toronto puts on one of the biggest Pride celebrations in the world. With over one million people attending the festivities, Toronto Pride weekend exceeded all of my expectations. On my last visit to Toronto, I had the best time of my life. People in Toronto are friendly and they make you feel at home, and will make your stay enjoyable and one to remember.
Pride Week in Toronto is celebrated over 10 days turning the streets into parades and parking lots into parties. The gay community of Toronto offers some of the best in arts and cultural programming, community activities, and of course one of the world’s largest Pride Parade
on the Sunday of that weekend. Don't ever miss the Dyke March
that takes place on the Saturday on that weekend, but the best treat on my trip was seeing Cindy Lauper
who took center stage at Queen’s Park
. This concert was free, and Ms Lauper entertained thousands of people as she performed her cheery “True Colors” hit.
Toronto offers a lot more than just the festival. The city is also famed for good restaurants, museums and many galleries. If shopping is on your list, then a visit to the neighborhood of Yorkville
is a must. Located north of the gay village, Yorkville is the best place for shopping. It has many designer shops, terrific boutiques, and many outdoor restaurants. A visit to one of my favorite museums The Royal Ontario is a must
. The Royal Ontario is the home of the biggest dinosaurs collection in north America, as well as to other exhibits that present years of diverse culture.
Toronto has many great hotels, and accommodation that can suite all types of travelers and budgets. Finding the right place will not be a problem at all. I stayed at the Cosmopolitan Hotel on 8 Colborne Street, in downtown Toronto. For reservations call 1.800.958.3488.
One of the best conveniences of staying at the Cosmopolitan Hotel is the proximity to Porters Airlines airport. Flying to Toronto with Porters Airlines will be the best decision you will make for this trip. Located in downtown Toronto the airport is only
five minutes from the hotel. Porters’ approach is revolutionary and they offer one of the best experiences for air travelers today. With a coach ticket you get all the privileges of business class at no additional cost, So if you have a chance to fly it, don’t hesitate for a second.
The 31st Toronto Pride
Week will take place from Friday June 24, to Sunday July 3, 2011.
For more information visit www.pridetoronto.com
Your chance to win A FREE TRIP TO TORONTO FOR TWO.
Airfare by Porter Airlines,
and two night accommodations at the Sheraton Hotel
will be included. Courtesy of OntarioTourism.
To enter this sweepstake you must ‘Like Us'
on Facebook and 'Follow Us' on Twitter.
Last day to enter is May 26, 2011. Winners will be notified by e-mail on Friday, May 27, 2011.
Thursday, April 14th, 2011
Keynote Competitive Research, the industry analysis research group announced the results of Industry Study examining U.S. Hotel Reservation Websites. In the 2011 U.S. Hotel Reservation Sites study, Hotels.com took first place for Best Overall Customer Experience and Marriott.com came in first for Best Overall Technical Quality for their websites.
Key findings include: Hotels.com, Expedia, and Orbitz are the top-tier sites for Conversion. Tor Customer Satisfaction it is the Hilton Hotels. Hotels.com is considered the most “convenient” and “friendly,” while Expedia is the most “helpful.” Hotels.com is deemed most “flexible & accommodating to customer requests," and Orbitz is considered the most “fun.”
“Based on our analysts’ observations and interviews with our panel of actual users, the study of US hotel reservation websites revealed that when booking hotel reservations online trust, security, customer support and the booking process are the top determining factors of a positive customer experience,” said Christopher Musto, general manager of Keynote.
In addition to evaluating customer experience with its panel of actual users, the study also examined two broad aspects of technical quality: responsiveness and reliability. Based on the thousands of transactions monitored over the course of the study, Marriott.com is ranked first in All Overall Technical Quality. In the two components of ‘Technical Quality,’ Sheraton set the standard for responsiveness (or speed), while Marriott led the group in reliability and was third in responsiveness.
Source: Press release from Keynote Competitive Research.
Friday, February 25th, 2011
photos and story by Ed Walsh
Torremolinos, one of the many famed municipalities composing Spain’s autonomous “sunny coast” community of Andalusia, may be the gayest city you never heard of. Located on the southwest corner of the country, this city has more than three dozen gay bars and nightclubs. Locals claim Torremolinos has the most gay venues of any Spanish city outside of Madrid and Barcelona. This gay playground is also the only town in Europe with a major airport. The Malaga, the third busiest airport in Spain, is just 10 minutes away from the heart of Torremolinos.
This area’s always-abounding nightlife is comparable to Costa del Sol’s annual climate, which averages 324 days of sunshine per year. Mild winters, warm springs, warm falls and hot summers complement this paradise known for being a major destination of the rich and famous.
The first stop for most visitors to Costa de Sol is Malaga. With a population of nearly 600,000, it is the largest city in the region and best known as the birthplace of Spain’s most acclaimed artist Pablo Picasso. Packed with the prolific painter’s works, the Museo La Casa Picasso is one of the most visited attractions on the coast. Malaga’s Cathedral is known best for having just one steeple. After 250 years, the construction ended in 1782. The second steeple was never completed, but today Malagans are happy with their distinctive landmark nonetheless.
MARBELLA AND PUERTO BANÚS
What began as a small fishing village in the 1940’s, Marbella since blossomed into one of the most popular resort destinations of the international jet set. The super-rich lifestlyes of which are clearly evoked in neighboring Puerto Banús, where an ultra-chic array of shops showcase wares on par with that of the multimillion-dollar yachts docked in the adjacent luxury marina.
However, the Old Town distrcict is wonderful window into Marbella’s less extravagent past. With narrow streets and white buildings, designed to minimize the sun and the heat during the hot summer months this old city is a great palce to spend a few hours in the early evening.
For gourmet food, and one of the best restaurants in Costa del Sol, make a reservation at La Meridiana. Regarded as Marbella’s finest dining, the restaurant is set in a Moorish/Arabian style building surrounded by a garden and a decorative pool. This eatery offers outstaning dishes all prepared with the freshest local ingredients available.
RONDA AND MIJAS
Ronda is another Costa del Sol treasure not to be missed. It is one of Spain’s oldest towns. It is on a mountainside nearly 2500 feet above sea level and has a population of 40,000. It takes about 45 minutes to drive the winding road into town from Torremolinos. The views along the way are of spectacular– white Andalucían villages, the signature of this region. The town’s emblematic symbol is the bridge over the gorge that separates the two sides of the city. (It is a mini-version of the Grand Canyon).
Eleven miles west of Torremolinos, the charming city of Mijas lies in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada mountains. Known for its Sunday Bullfights, this town has the best and most spectacular views of the coast. A visit to the Mijas Wine Museum will reveal the wine history of the region. A quick stop at the historic circa building from1839 for tapas and drinks is recommended.
WHAT TO SEE
Travelers opting to tour the coast via a morning Mediterrranean sailboat cruise, will not only be afforded breathtaking views of The Rock of Gibralter (on a clear day), but may also find themselves making port in a different culture on a different continent. Being able to reach Morocco in under an hour, visitors can spend the day sight-seeing in Casablanca—the city where Bogart’s Blaine told Berman’s Lund, “Here’s looking at you, Kid.”— and make it back to Spain in time for dinner.
WHERE TO STAY
Located in the heart of Malaga, minutes away from the city’s gay nightlife, Room Mate Lola Hotel is a good place to hang your sombrero. It is also Spain’s first gay-friendly hotel chain.
The Marbella Club Hotel and the Hotel Puente Romano are among the finest resort hotels in Europe. They are situated along the “Golden Mile” of Marbella, between the Old Town and Puerto Banús. Unlike most European hotels, the rooms are quite spacious and most include balconies or patios overlooking the ocean. Amenities include tennis courts, pools, a gym and aspa. Rates starts at $200.
If you really want to splurge, stay at the Villa Padierna Hotel, part of the Ritz-Carton chain. Rates start at $280. Fifteen minutes from downtown Marbella, the Melia La Quinta Hotel offers luxury stay at bargain rates. Starting at $144 per night, this gay-friendly eatable; isment is one of the best deals in town. For about $40 more, guests get two hours in the spa plus lunch.
Located next to gorge’s arched bridge, the Paradore Hotel in Ronda is one of the best in the Paradores chain. Rates run from $175 per night. Guests can save some dinero by staying at the Hostal Guadalupe in Torremolinos. Rates start at just $45, and it’s the only gay hotel in Costa del Sol.
With more than two dozen gay bars, nightclubs and a few saunas, the gay village known as Nogalera claims controll over 80% of Torremolinos’ nightlife. Everything here gets moving after 1a.m., and Home nightclub is the hotest spot in town. For those looking to get frisky, an expansive dark room is on site. Another late-night mega club is Passion, with room for over 2,000 club goers. The early set can check out El Gato Lounge, which opens at 7 p.m. and touts the “biggest gay terrace” in Torremolinos.Café El Atrio opens daily at 8 p.m and is mixed with gay guys and girls. Bear bar Bacchus is open daily from 10 p.m. to 2 a.m., and Anfora is the lesbian place to be, only on weekends from 10 p.m.- 2:30 a.m. Malaga also supports active gay life. The Elarmen bar is busy earlier in the evening. It attracts mostly gay men and some lesbians. The Reinas bar hosts a late-night, gay-male crowd and it’s open all night.
There are three gay beaches in Costa del Sol. The most popular is Cabopino Beach. It’s in a nature reserve, near the five-star Don Carlos Hotel between Marbella and Calahonda. Gays tend to hang out in the far end of the clothing-optional beach below bushes overlooking the shore that attract an adventurous crowd. The Poseidon Beach is a nude beach, about a 15-minute’s drive from Cabopino Beach and right in the center of town. The Guadalmar Beach is located between Torremolinos and Malaga. It is also clothing-optional. Overall, Cabopino has an older crowd. The crowd tends to skew younger at Poseidon and Guadalmar tends to be more mixed.
For more information visit www.spain.info
Friday, February 4th, 2011by David CohenAtlantis Events
, Inc., the world’s largest company specializing in all gay/lesbian cruises and resort vacations, announces its embarking onboard the largest gay cruise ever. This Sunday, February 6
, Royal Caribbean International’s Allure of the Seas
leaves port with nearly 5,400 gay and lesbian guests.
Celebrating the line’s 20th anniversary
cruise, the voyage departs from Ft. Lauderdale, Fla. and promises a lineup of the best gay and lesbian talent. From comedians to cabaret stars and seven of the world’s top DJs taking the boat’s signature stages–this pleasure cruise stands to set sail as possibly the biggest production Atlantis has ever orchestrated in its 20-year history.
“Our guest response was incredible,” said Rich Campbell
, CEO of Atlantis. “Our guests always want the newest and most exciting experiences in the world. We knew they would love this cruise, but had no idea just how strong the response would be. So much of what we are creating onboard is the culmination of 20 years of experience and getting to know what our guests really love.”
The company also confirms that Allure of the Seas is booked for next year. The 2012 cruise will depart from Ft. Lauderdale on January 29, 2012
, with stops in Cozumel and Costa Maya, Mexico and Labadee in Haiti.
Other cruises planned for this year are the Southern Caribbean cruise in March, the 20th anniversary Mediterranean cruise this summer, and The Mexican Riviera cruise on the Oosterdam
in October, 2011.
For reservations call Atlantis at 1-800-6-ATLANTIS. For detailed information visit www.atlantisevents.com
Thursday, October 14th, 2010
The Tourist Office of Spain in Chicago
hosted dozens of travel, media and sales professionals in the lower ballroom and conference center at the city’s Park Hyatt Hotel Wednesday, October 13, 2010. In celebration of “It & Me” 2010’s Motivation Show
—an annual convention featuring programs geared toward the incentive, recognition, loyalty and motivational meetings industry—The Tourist Office of Spain showcased an evening of mingling, dining and dancing.
The night’s highlights featured an open bar and a buffet of Spanish delicacies, such as seafood paella, two carving stations and an individual conference room filled with dessert. A live band, performing native songs as well as mainstream favorites, took the stage while couples in attendance (some wearing boots as exotic as the Spanish-themed backdrop) enjoyed the adjacent dance floor.
The Tourist Offices of Spain are the representatives abroad of the Instituto de Turismo de España (TURESPAÑA), which is the Administrative unit of the Central Government of Spain in charge of promoting Spain abroad as a tourism destination. Their website offers visitors a comprehensive look at the culture, cuisine and attractions available to those traveling to Spain. www.spain.info/index.html?l=en_USPictured above, left to right: Live band sings esoteric Spanish songs, carver cuts esoteric ham and attendees wear esoteric shoes.
Tuesday, September 21st, 2010
Per the American Airlines
corporate communications office in Fort Worth, Texas—As people around the world prepare for Oktoberfest merriment, AA is showcasing Germany as its featured destination by celebrating the country’s culture with the new Leder Posin’ photo contest, currently highlighted on the company’s AAdvantage® MilestonesTM online travel guide.
The Leder Posin’ photo contest, which runs from Septempter15-October 15, encourages customers to submit photos of people dressed in lederhosen or any traditional German attire at Oktoberfest celebrations or other global tourist attractions for a chance to win a grand prize of 275,000 AAdvantage miles. After the submission period, ten finalists will be chosen to each receive 25,000 miles. Milestones visitors will then be able to vote for their favorite photo, which will award the grand prize winner an additional 250,000 miles. Photos can be uploaded to the Leder Posin’ photos gallery at www.aa.com/milestones
In addition to the photo contest, customers who visit the Milestones online travel guide and vote for their favorite photos will be entered in a sweepstakes for a chance to win 100,000 AAdvantage miles. Voting runs from November 1-30. For more information on the AAdvantage program, including a list of participating companies, visit www.aa.com/aadvantage
Posted on June 11, 2010
by David Cohen
The National Center for Transgender Equality (NCTE) sent me an email, and I need to share the news with you the readers.
Last night the US Department of State announced new guidelines for issuing passports to transgender people. Beginning today, applicants for a gender marker change on their passports will need to submit certification from a physician that they have received ‘appropriate clinical treatment’ for gender transition. Most importantly, gender reassignment surgery is not required under the new policy. The new rules will also apply to changing a Consular Report of Birth Abroad (CRBA) for US citizens who were born outside of the United States. CRBA’s are the equivalent of a birth certificate.
For years, NCTE (The National Center for Transgender Equality) has been advocating with the State Department to change their rules about gender markers on passports and CRBA’s. Previously they had required proof of irreversible sex reassignment surgery before the gender marker could be changed, although there were exceptions for temporary, provisional passports to allow someone to travel for surgery.
NCTE and other advocates have stressed with the State Department that this policy unnecessarily called attention to transgender travelers whose appearance and gender marker were at odds. In some destinations, this had the potential to create an extremely dangerous situation when a traveler is outed as transgender in an unwelcoming environment or in the presence of prejudiced security personnel.
Fortunately, the new rules represent a significant advance in providing safe, humane and dignified treatment of transgender people. There are details in the guidelines about what information a physician must provide and we will communicate those to you as soon as possible. However, the State Department notes that applicants will not need to supply any additional medical documentation and that there is no SRS requirement.
“’We want to extend our thanks to the Obama Administration, and particularly to Secretary of State Hilary Clinton, for understanding the need for this change and then responding to make travel safer for transgender people," commented Mara Keisling, Executive Director of NCTE. This shows how changes in government policy directly impact people’s lives, in this case, for the better. "In the next few days, NCTE will be issuing a definitive resource that fully explains the new guidelines and outlines the ways in which transgender people can make changes to their passports and CRBAs."
Many people—from elected officials to LGBT advocates—have worked for years to change these policies and deserve credit and thanks. Particularly important work was done by Rep. Barney Frank as well as Rep. Steve Israel in the House of Representatives; Gays and Lesbians in Foreign Affairs Agencies (GLIFAA), which represents LGBT employees and their families working in foreign affairs offices for the US government; all of our allied LGBT organizations who have been committed to this work, including the Center for Global Equality, The Task Force, the National Center for Lesbian Rights, Lambda Legal and the Human Rights Campaign; and those working on medical policies, including the American Medical Association and the World Professional Association for Transgender Health (WPATH).
Friday, June 11th, 2010by David Cohen
Within walking distance from the world-famous Duval Street
in Key West,
the Hyatt Key West Resort and Spa
is offering a luxurious vacation experience “par excel-lance”.
During Gay Pride, the Hyatt is offering a special deal to LGBT guests - The Pride Welcome Package
which offers the best rates on the island, along with a welcome amenity valued up to $25, daily full American breakfast for two, 4 p.m. late checkout and personalized service from a GLBT focused concierge.
To take advantage of this special offer and enjoy posh accommodations for as low as $300 a night you need to mention the code LGBT10
, by visiting www.keywest.hyatt.com
, or calling 1-800-233-1234. This offer is good through December 30, 2010.
Hyatt Key West Resort and Spa featuring 118 guest-rooms, each with a private balcony boasting stunning views of the Gulf of Mexico. A centrally-located swimming pool and the eclectic Blue Mojito Pool Bar and Grill
provide the perfect ambiance for enjoying a cocktail or delicious lunch. When it’s time for total relaxation, the 24-hour StayFit@Hyatt
gym is one option. A visit to Jala Spa
is the second option and it is a must. Treatments are ranging from deep tissue massage to a Cuban Coffee Body Glow.
There is no doubt in my mind, you will rejuvenate your body and soul. For a true taste of the Keys, treat yourself to dinner at SHOR American Seafood Grill
which features fresh seafood caught daily from the Gulf of Mexico.
Conveniently located the Hyatt is within walking distance of Key West’s top restaurants and attractions. My favorite restaurant is nine one five
on Duval Street. Owner Stuart Kemp
and his lovely wife make sure you will have one of the best dining experiences in Key West. The food is authentic, simple and fresh. Many of the ingredients are imported from Europe and the restaurant has a great wine list at reasonable prices.
After dinner walk toward Petronia Street,
the core of the gay nightlife in Key West. The legendary 801 Bourbon Street
and 801 Duval
bars at the corner of Duval and Petronia have been a part of the Key West landscape for over 30 years. In the Cabaret you will find nightly shows headlined by such famed performers as Sushi, Kylie, RV Beaumont, and many more. Don’t miss Aqua
Nightclub, one of Key West’s largest gay dance club. It is the home for many life entertainment that include nightly drag shows, karaoke, dueling bartenders, Go-Go dancers and much more. A visit to the Island House
is a must where clothing is optional. This is the biggest gay resort in Key West and recently was named “The best gay men’s resort in the world” by OUT Traveler Magazine. For more information visit www.gaykeywestfl.com.
Key West draws many visitors from all over the world who come here to experience many of the water activities. para-sailing. With gentle dry take offs and landings, you will find para-sailing to be an exhilarating way to experience one of Key West water adventures. From above you will enjoy breathtaking views of the emerald blue waters, and amazing panoramic sights of the southern part of the city that can only be seen from the air. With a friendly staff, the Fury Boats
hold 12 passengers, they are safe, comfortable and reasonably priced. You can book any of the water adventures at the gift store at the Hyatt.
For more information or for reservations, visit keywest.hyatt.com
or call 1-800-55-HYATT.